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PhD Opportunities at MSSL, UCL 

Welcome to UCL's Mullard Space Science Laboratory (Department of Space & Climate Physics), host to some of the most exciting research in astrophysics, space science and climate physics in the UK.

Applications

Application for PhD positions commencing in September 2017 is now open.

Applications from UK and EU students submitted by 5 February 2017 will be given full consideration for a STFC studentship and a new cosmoparticle initiative studentship. 

MSSL is a partner institute of the new STFC Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) where more funded studentships are available. Please see the CDT page for more information.

We welcome applications from students who have own-funding, and you can apply anytime.

Please see the list of research groups and supervisors and the research project page.

Some of our first year research students' experience can be found here

mssl_phd

How to apply

Please apply using the online application method wherever possible, since we receive applications much more quickly in this case.

Online applications

Apply online via the UCL website. If you require assistance with the application process, please e-mail Philippa Elwell (p.elwell AT ucl.ac.uk). 

  • Please ensure you choose the Department of Space & Climate Physics when completing the form. You need to submit a separate application to our department, if you are applying also to other departments in UCL. 
  • The normal requirement for admission is a 2:i MSci (2:i BSc otherwise) or a second-class Bachelor's degree together with MSc or equivalent.
  • Once you have submitted your application to the department via the UCL website, please notify us using the submission notification form to help us to track your application. There were some applicants who submitted their application to the other department, such as Department of Physics & Astronomy, by mistake. We cannot see the application submitted to the other department, but if you send us the notification, we can make sure if we have received your application. 

Application Process

STFC studentship (for UK students): Applications submitted by 5 February 2017 will be given full consideration. We will continue accepting applications until all places are filled. After we receive your application, we will select candidates for interviews. If you are selected, you will be invited for an interview at MSSL on 1, 6, 8, 13 or 15 March 2017. You will have the opportunity to see the laboratory, students' flats and talk to current students.

Cosmoparticle Initiative Studentship (for UK/EU students): Applications submitted by 5 February 2017 will be given full consideration. There are a few studentships available under a new cosmoparticle initiative. The cosmoparticle projects are co-supervised by staff from different UCL research groups. However the application procedure is the same as for STFC studentship. There is no need to apply to both groups to be considered for one of these positions. 

Other (self-funding) students: We welcome applications from students who have own-funding.  We accept the application from self-funding students anytime. After we receive your application, you will normally be invited for an interview at MSSL on an individual basis. You will have the opportunity to see the laboratory, students' flats and talk to current students. Note that students are still required to meet the academic entry requirements in this case. 

For information about UCL scholarships (GRS, ORS) see below.

Studentships available and eligibility requirements

Entry requirements

An upper second-class Bachelor’s degree, or a second-class Bachelor’s degree together with a Master's degree from a UK university in a relevant subject, or an equivalent overseas qualification.

English level expected for the students whose first language is not EnglishStandard

Fees

Both fees and funding opportunities are primarily dependent on nationality.

UK/EU applicants

STFC studensthip

Students from the UK or those from the EU who meet the residency requirements (3 years' full-time residency in the UK) are potentially eligible for a Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) studentship.

These pay UK/EU tuition fees and a maintenance allowance.

EU students who do not meet eligibility requirements still qualify for the UK/EU fees rate, but not the STFC maintenance allowance.

Cosmoparticle Initiative Studentship

Eligibility criteria is the same as STFC studentship. This studentship will provide UK/EU tuition fees and a maintenance allowance for both UK and EU students. 

Self-funding students

The decision to admit self-funding students or not is made separately by each department. Note that students are still required to meet the academic entry requirements in this case. 

UK/EU applicants are also eligible to apply for the prestigious UCL Graduate Research Scholarships (GRS). These cover tuition fees at the UK/EU rate, and a cost of living allowance at a similar rate to the STFC studentships. Competition for these is very high. 

Sources of funding for non-UK applicants

This page has links to other potential funding sources. These are all competitive scholarships. However, we are happy to support enthusiastic students who apply for these scholarship, and welcome their enquiries.

UCL GRS/ORS
  • UCL Graduate Research Scholarships (GRS). These cover tuition fees at the UK/EU rate, and a cost of living allowance at a similar rate to the STFC studentships. Competition for these is very strong. Non-EU applicants require additional funding from the ORS scheme to cover the remaining cost of tuition fees. 
  • UCL Overseas Research Scholarships (ORS). These provide funding to cover the difference between overseas and UK/EU tuition fees, and students applying for an ORS may also submit a GSRS application. There are more ORS awards than GSRS awards.

Please submit your scholarship application (pdf file) via email to Philippa Elwell (p.elwell AT ucl.ac.uk) by 6 January 2017. Please also arrange for the reference letters (pdf file) to be sent to the same address by 6 January 2017.

Note that GRS/ORS awards are allocated across UCL by the Graduate School Selection Panel. While individual departments are invited to submit a shortlist of candidates, they have no formal role in the allocation of awards. This shortlist must be submitted to the Graduate School by their deadline of 20 January 2017. For this reason, applicants for GRS/ORS MUST submit their application to  the department by 6 January 2017. Please also note that the GRS/ORS applicant has to submit their UCL admission application via UCL system by 6 January 2017, too.

MAPS Dean's prize and CSC

MAPS faculty Dean's prize for China Scholarship Council (CSC) Research Scholarships applicants. Prospective Chinese students can apply for this generous scholarship. The Dean's prize will cover the full tuition costs, and CSC will cover a maintenance allowance, travel and visa costs. Please submit a short (1 page max) description of the proposed research project (pdf file) and CV (pdf file) via email to Philippa Elwell (p.elwell AT ucl.ac.uk) by 15 January 2017. Please also arrange for two reference letters (pdf file) from colleagues external to UCL to be sent to the same address by 15 January 2017.

Please contact the department (your potential supervisor and/or departmental graduate tutor: Daisuke Kawata) as soon as possible, if you want to apply for the GRS/ORS or the Dean's prize, so that we can provide advice in a timely fashion. We look forward to hearing from you.

Page last modified on 01 feb 17 15:42